Happy Friday, dear friends. I have long been on a mission to make people happy on Facebook. So many folks complain about the drama that exists on this social media network. Since I have to use it for work, I have chosen to make my experience with it a good one.
On my personal page, I share tons of silly pictures and uplifting videos. Anything that feels good to me is shared. Sometimes that includes information that is credited to a specific individual or science.
Invariably, when I share something like this, one of my oldest friends, who holds multiple master level degrees, will point out that the information isn’t relevant, because there is no way to check the facts related to the attribution. He wont believe something unless it is based in fact, and he points this out repeatedly.
The truth is relative. Statistics and facts can be spun in any direction, to support the position of any group. The more official a statement sounds, in my estimation, the more effort the information creator is putting into making sure people believe it. In my book, that alone makes it suspect.
I always refer back to visiting the Natural History Museum as a child, and seeing the T-Rex skeleton in the lobby. It was standing upright like Godzilla. Scientists displayed it this way, because they believed it was the proper posture for the giant reptile. When I returned with my girls years later, it was completely reconfigured to look like a giant running bird, which scientists had recently discovered was its genetic heritage. So much for the truth.
My reason for sharing anything is not so people believe me, nor is it to show what I believe in. I find great joy in making people feel good. They can choose to do so, or not. It is their personal choice. I have long ago stopped trying to make people see the truth, because it is simply different for every being. It also shifts based on additional information. If a message makes you feel good and you attune with it, based on your own intuition, then that is great. I am not going to debate its truth or merit. I will simply love you anyway, no matter what you believe, or how you need information delivered to you.
Today we share some exciting green energy projects from all over the world, and we move on from there.
Danish island shares their knowledge on sustainable energy with some US islanders.
When I was a young girl, we used to sail up and down the New England coast in the summer time. We visited many tiny islands on our journey, and it was always interesting to see how islanders lived. Some islands catered to tourists and others were still based in fishery culture. I loved those wild and free islands the best.
In 1977, we approached Cuttyhunk, which is the first island in the chain of dots that connects to the land mass of Cape Cod. There, atop the peak of the island was a giant windmill. It was a prototype turbine, installed by WTG Energy Systems. It looked so majestic rising to dwarf the rest of the island. When we hiked up to see it, the scale was even more pronounced. This thing was immense, and the island expected the 200KW wind turbine to generate a significant portion of its energy. Today, that original turbine is gone. When oil prices went down in the 80’s, governmental subsidies shifted away from sustainable energy and everyone went back to business as usual.
With a push towards sustainability, green energy and support of the environment, forward thinking municipalities are realizing that renewable energy will give them returns, no matter what happens to the supply of fossil fuels.
A small island called Samso, off the coast of Denmark, began working on green energy sustainability in 1997. Using a combination of wind and solar generators for electricity, and geothermal and plant based sources for heating, they gained energy independence in 2005. They produce more energy than they use, and ship the excess to the mainland via an 11 mile long cable. They sell the overage to the national power grid, and this helps to financially support the islanders who have a co-operative vested interest in the project.
Samso islanders have also created an energy academy, where they train students and utility employees to use the sustainable techniques that the island employs. A group from the islands off the US coast of Maine, recently visited the academy, and this article details their experience.
The technology is available. The means to generate energy using nature, is available. To create a bright energy future, all must be willing to turn away from the cheapest option at the present moment. In the building and replacement of energy infrastructure, it is key to focus on the most viable and sustainable option that will eventually generate the greenest outcome for the whole world.
St. Vincent island in the Caribbean to expand its green energy use.
It is simple to understand why islanders would focus on creating sustainable energy projects. The cost of shipping fossil fuels to the island, which also uses fossil fuels, creates a huge drain on the economic resources of the island. They also have to build their own contained energy generation utilities, if they are far from shore. To have electricity and mechanization, they must spend far more money than those who live close to large energy grids.
On St. Vincent, some of the energy is generated via 3 hydro-electric generators. The rest uses diesel. The cost of energy is several times higher than the price in the US. A partnership of businesses, including firms from Iceland and Canada have come together to create a geothermal energy generation system on the slopes of the La Soufriere volcano, which last erupted in 1979.
The island has also installed a solar field, with 750 kilowatt hours of photovoltaic panels, that has reduced their carbon emissions by 800 tons annually. The government of St. Vincent hopes to have the geothermal plant online as early as 2017. They believe that sustainable energy will help revitalize the agricultural processing industry on the island, as well as making tourism to the island more affordable.
Gas backpacks help rural entrepreneurs to sell home made bio fuel.
A few years ago, I created my own biomass digester. As a student of biology and an avid gardener, I knew all the processes necessary to create organic fertilizer for my garden, and I set about to do just that.
In the process, I was able to create a unit that digested clean paper and cardboard, yard waste and kitchen scraps, using available microorganisms and parrot droppings from my birds as the breakdown catalyst. One day, I put some of the left over liquid into a garden sprayer, and I left it in the garage. When I came back to use it a few days later, methane gas came out of the nozzle. I was so excited! I had created useable biogas out of garbage! All I needed to do was figure out a way to make it on a large scale. Then, as is invariably the case for polymaths, I got bored and dropped the project.
Good thing for the world, that others were working on this basic concept, and have been able to refine the process of harvesting the biogas for use in developing nations. The (B)Energy company has created stand alone products to generate biogas from organic waste in rural areas. The gas is then stored in giant (B)packs that have shoulder straps for easy carrying. Producers then deliver the gas to local customers who use their simple and clean (B)flame cooking stoves.
The company is franchising their products to rural entrepreneurs in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Their sustainable platform keeps costs low, and helps communities to invest in their own stand alone energy infrastructure. It also helps keep the environment clean, and cuts down on deforestation, by eliminating the use of charcoal and wood in home cookers.
You are never too young to start your own company when you have an idea that will help people.
13-year-old Shubham Banerjee asked his father how blind people read. His dad told him to Google it. That was the start of an amazing journey that led Shubham to start a company in California’s Silicon Valley called Braigo.
He built a simple braille printer, using a robotics kit from Lego. He was shocked to see that braille embossers cost over $2,000 US, which was much too expensive for blind folks in developing nations. His easy to use design was fine tuned and began to win many awards for design and technology.
He started Braigo, with a $35,000 investment from his father, and Intel Corporation recently invested in his company as well. Since he is too young to be the CEO of his own company, his mother will take on the roll. According to Intel, he is the youngest entrepreneur to receive venture capital in exchange for a stake in the future return of a company.
He has received a lot of praise from activists and agencies within the blind community. He aims to higher engineers who can further streamline the product and make it available at an affordable price all over the world.
Move that car!
Nathaniel Kendrick retired a number of years ago, and dedicated himself to service with the Lakewood School in Dallas, Texas. He was a crossing guard for the school, and “Mr. Kent” helped hundreds of students remain safe every single day.
His kindness and dedication were evident to all who met him. Recently, he began to struggle financially as he cared for his ill wife. His car was repossessed, and this made it difficult for him to continue to volunteer for the school.
A group of area fathers decided to do something to help Mr. Kent. They bought him a new car. The video reveal brought tears to my eyes. Often, people are thankful for the service they receive from other kind souls, and are simply looking for a way to pay back. These dads found the perfect thank you present and it makes my heart sing with joy!
That’s the news for today. Have an inspirational day. I hope to see you back here tomorrow for more news.
Be Well. Be Joy. Be Love!